Sunday, August 23, 2009

Book Blogger Retreat

. This was the weekend of the Book Blogger Retreat here in Portland. It was terrific to meet some of my fellow bloggers and do some very fun bookish things. Huge thanks go to Trish at Hey Lady! Whatcha Readin'? for organizing the event. PARTICIPANTS Wendy from Caribousmom Bethany from Dreadlock Girl Trish from Hey Lady! Whatcha Readin'? Gabe from Reading Local Teddy from So Many precious Books, So Little Time Juli from Whimpulsive Kristen from We Be Reading Ali from Worducopia ACTIVITIES We met Friday evening for dinner at Ringler's, the McMenamin's in the Crystal Ballroom building. It was a great, casual way to all meet each other and get acquainted. Saturday morning was the tour of Powell's, which was entertaining and interesting, even for the Portlanders among us who think we "know" Powell's. For instance, I did not know that 1) there are a million books on the shelves at any time; 2) there is a huge tank under the store that catches the rainwater and regulates the flow into the sewers so as to help the city deal with the never-solved problem of its "combined sewer/overflow system"; 3) they have one of the original editions of the Lewis and Clark Journals, for $35,000; and 4) someone is buried in the book column outside the 11th Avenue entrance. Thanks go to Bethany for arranging the tour! We started off Saturday afternoon with a presentation in the Rare Book Room of the Multnomah County Library. Jim Carmin showed us some amazing books and ephemera from the collection, including a couple of contemporary "art books," a letter from Charles Dickens, a book of hours woven in silk, a manuscript about a safari that is bound in lion skin, and one book from the four-volume The Birds of America set by John James Audubon. This was the highlight of the weekend for me. I was blown away. Thanks go to Ali for setting this up. After the rare books, we had a great "round table" discussion (minus the actual table) with Portland author Molly Gloss. Molly was gracious and engaging, willing to talk with us about writing, blogging, the state of the publishing industry, her experiences as an author, and her books. Her latest novel, The Hearts of Horses, is getting rave reviews and is going on my TBR shelf right away. Thanks go to Gabe for making arrangements with Molly! This was a really wonderful event and I am so glad I was here to participate. Trish took copious notes and lots of pictures -- as did several others -- so they will have very good wrap-up posts. Please visit their blogs to read more about the Book Blogger Retreat. .

21 comments :

bermudaonion said...

I wish I could have been there! I've been lucky enough to meet several bloggers and every single one has been exactly the way I expected them to be.

J.T. Oldfield said...

Oh man, I knew I should've driven down from Seattle!

SuziQoregon said...

What a fun day! So glad I was able to be there for at least part of it and meet such great folks in person!

Nicole said...

I'm so glad that you guys had such a good time. I would have enjoyed it so! Unfortunately the timing just didn't work out.

Jen - Devourer of Books said...

How fun! I'm so glad you all had a good time, and I'm looking forward to reading more posts.

Ali said...

It was a lovely weekend, and even better: now that you've posted such a nice summary of it, I don't have to. I'll just link to yours!

Rose City Reader said...

It was a great event. It would have been nice if more bloggers could have come, but there were people from CA, OR, WA, and Vancouver, BC -- which made it an INTERNATIONAL Book Blogger Retreat -- so that is a pretty good draw.

Kristen M. said...

I loved meeting you and everyone else! This was a great blend of events. We'll definitely need to recruit more people and have another one at some point!

Wendy said...

Fantastic summary of this fun weekend, Gillian :) It was great to meet everyone...and I agree, the rare books event at the library was definitely a highlight for me too. I'll be posting later today I hope (with photos...and no, I didn't forget that I told you I'd email them to you!).

Rebecca Reid said...

Sounds like fun! I'd love to see Powells, too.

bethany (dreadlock girl) said...

I was nice getting to meet you!! That was certainly an excellent wrap-up post. I loved the detail. Mine will be picture heavy,and it will be up (hopefully) soon...(meaning sometime this week).

Happy reading!

Gavin said...

I'm sorry I didn't make it down. Sounds like you all had a great time!

trish said...

I think you did a pretty good wrap up post! I will be doing one myself, but it won't post until sometime next week.

I was really excited to meet you, and I only wish the weekend was longer. :) I'm sure we'll be doing it again!

Teddy Rose said...

Gillian, it was so nice to meet you. It was a wonderful weekend and I wish it could have been longer!

I'm actually kind of glad we weren't a large group as it was hard to have 1:1 conversations as it was, to get to know everyone.

I hope we can do it again!

Lenore said...

Makes me wish I lived in the Portland area. Glad you all had such a great time.

Booklogged said...

I just read your post to my husband. When I finished I let out a big sigh - you know the kind - filled with longing and missing out.

I met SuziQ from Wimpulsive when we visited Portland last October. We met in Powell's. I'm going to have to email Trish and ask her to let me know if there's a get together next year. Sounds to me like a perfect excuse to plan another vacation in Oregon.

Diane said...

Sounds like a fabulous time for all.

Serena said...

Wow, I wish I could've gone, but living on the east coast makes that cost-prohibitive for me right now.

"someone is buried in the book column outside the 11th Avenue entrance"---and they don't know who??

Alyce said...

It's so fun reading everyone's wrap-up posts! I wish I could have been there, but my husband and I were on vacation.

Rose City Reader said...

Serena -- Mr. Powell, at least, knows who is buried in the pillar. But they didn't tell us the man's name when we took the tour. He was a big fan of the store who, apparently, wanted his ashes put in the store when he died. His widow asked and Mr. Powell agreed to put the remains in the new column.

He must have been a good customer!

Rose City Reader said...

Alyce -- I wish you had been in town for the retreat. I was looking forward to meeting another fellow Portland book blogger.

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